hippeastrumnewbyquestion

gravesendkent, United Kingdom

hi i have just aquired a hippeastrum
but am having problem with tiny black flies
could anyone tell me the problem and how to deal with it plant
is indoors thanks babs

Palm Coast, FL(Zone 9a)

Those pesky tiny black flies are probably what we call fungus gnats. They hatch from eggs in the soil and eat the organic matter and fungus in the soil. They like wet soil, so the drier you keep the soil, the better. I bring the pots of Amaryllis, when they are in bloom, into the living area, otherwise I keep all my houseplants in one room, with a closed door, and put out fly paper (strips) on the windows of the room, since the gnats fly towards light. That cuts down on the problem, since I am eliminating the adults before they lay new eggs. Some people use pesticides on the soil to kill the eggs, I prefer not to use chemicals. An "organic" treatment is to mix hydrogen peroxide into the water with which you water your houseplants. It acts to inhibit fungal growth, which is the food of the fungus gnats. One year, I tried this, with mixed results. Perhaps someone, in this forum, remembers the formula for this. There is another old fashion remedy, covering the potting soil with a layer of dry sand, to discourage the gnats from laying eggs. However you do it, you need to reduce moisture and reduce decay, a tough balancing act with houseplants. Good luck.

gravesendkent, United Kingdom

hi bsharf thanks for your reply will try what you sugested
may thanks babs

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